The supernatural

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Mike Strand
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Re: The supernatural

Post by Mike Strand » Thu Jul 05, 2018 5:08 pm

If reality is everything that exists, and is composed of nature and the supernatural, we may have to be concerned with the meaning of the verb, "to exist". Maybe not. It makes me shudder to think of it, though -- philosophical territory I fear to tread!

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Lacewing
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Re: The supernatural

Post by Lacewing » Thu Jul 05, 2018 5:14 pm

Mike Strand wrote:
Thu Jul 05, 2018 5:08 pm
If reality is everything that exists, and is composed of nature and the supernatural, we may have to be concerned with the meaning of the verb, "to exist". Maybe not. It makes me shudder to think of it, though -- philosophical territory I fear to tread!
Well, "exist" may be a human concept too. Seriously... our entire collection of frames of reference may be skewed and self-serving in ways that we simply cannot fathom.

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Re: The supernatural

Post by Mike Strand » Thu Jul 05, 2018 5:15 pm

Lacewing wrote:
Thu Jul 05, 2018 5:07 pm
I think the "supernatural" is a challenge to us to look beyond our own limited models... which is simply all that our models can be! So if someone feels compelled to completely "blow off" all potential of the supernatural, then I think it points to their attachment to their own limited models... and that's what they should really be afraid of. :lol:
Lacewing, you've given here a great justification for this thread. Thanks to QuantumT.
Last edited by Mike Strand on Thu Jul 05, 2018 5:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: The supernatural

Post by Mike Strand » Thu Jul 05, 2018 5:22 pm

Lacewing wrote:
Thu Jul 05, 2018 5:14 pm
Well, "exist" may be a human concept too. Seriously... our entire collection of frames of reference may be skewed and self-serving in ways that we simply cannot fathom.
Thanks again, Lacewing. I believe many people think of "to exist" as an attribute of something that can be detected, investigated, and eventually understood by human science. As you suggest, however, science relies on models and ultimately upon the senses of human beings and extensions of those senses, such as telescopes, geiger counters, particle accelerators, blood hounds, chemical analysis, and other such tools.

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Re: The supernatural

Post by Mike Strand » Thu Jul 05, 2018 5:53 pm

Let’s agree for the moment that “Reality” is limited to that which can eventually be detected, investigated, and eventually understood and explained by human science. Then much if not most of reality is still a mystery to us, and that isn’t a bad definition for “the supernatural”!

There will be many amazing, wonderful, and puzzling events that will happen and be witnessed, but may never be explained in our lifetimes. Call them miracles, for lack of a better term. This thread is a good place for folks to tell about them.

Even more so, if parts of "reality" can be witnessed by humans but can (or at least will) never be explained by human science.

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Lacewing
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Re: The supernatural

Post by Lacewing » Thu Jul 05, 2018 6:48 pm

I think it's interesting how we initially ignore the larger implications when the revelations of science or the supernatural extend "reality" beyond our previous models. For example... an atom being in two places at once. Or the Hundredth Monkey Phenomenon -- whereby knowledge has been shown to transfer through members of a species separated by distance. Or perhaps we truly see or hear or feel something that doesn't fit with our normal reality. The larger implications of such things are fantastic!

We are so intent on fitting new information/experiences into our existing models -- separating or compartmentalizing as needed -- both on a personal level and as a species -- almost as if our very "existence" depends on it! Think of the implications of THAT! :lol:

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-1-
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Re: The supernatural

Post by -1- » Thu Jul 05, 2018 8:15 pm

Mike Strand wrote:
Thu Jul 05, 2018 5:53 pm
Let’s agree for the moment that “Reality” is limited to that which can eventually be detected, investigated, and eventually understood and explained by human science. Then much if not most of reality is still a mystery to us, and that isn’t a bad definition for “the supernatural”!

There will be many amazing, wonderful, and puzzling events that will happen and be witnessed, but may never be explained in our lifetimes. Call them miracles, for lack of a better term. This thread is a good place for folks to tell about them.

Even more so, if parts of "reality" can be witnessed by humans but can (or at least will) never be explained by human science.
Yay, religious crap.

"Mystery" is not a definition of supernatural.

No, don't call them "miracles". There are better terms. "Hitherto unexplained." "Phenomenon that probably has a rational explanation." "An event that we don't know the causes of, as of yet." All these lack three qualities or properties that miracles possess: 1. Miracles are an act of god. 2. Miracles are explained immediately. 3. Miracles happen for a purpose.

There are tons of stuff that are not explicable by science, and it's right in front of our faces. But they are not for science to explain. 1. Why is there matter. 2. Why exist stupid idiots in the world. 3. Why people believe that there is truth in incredibly badly written text written 2000 years ago featuring logically impossible concepts (among many other highly suspiciously improbable things.)

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Re: The supernatural

Post by Mike Strand » Thu Jul 05, 2018 8:52 pm

-1- wrote:
Thu Jul 05, 2018 8:15 pm
Mike Strand wrote:
Thu Jul 05, 2018 5:53 pm
Let’s agree for the moment that “Reality” is limited to that which can eventually be detected, investigated, and eventually understood and explained by human science. Then much if not most of reality is still a mystery to us, and that isn’t a bad definition for “the supernatural”!

There will be many amazing, wonderful, and puzzling events that will happen and be witnessed, but may never be explained in our lifetimes. Call them miracles, for lack of a better term. This thread is a good place for folks to tell about them.

Even more so, if parts of "reality" can be witnessed by humans but can (or at least will) never be explained by human science.
Yay, religious crap.

"Mystery" is not a definition of supernatural.

No, don't call them "miracles". There are better terms. "Hitherto unexplained." "Phenomenon that probably has a rational explanation." "An event that we don't know the causes of, as of yet." All these lack three qualities or properties that miracles possess: 1. Miracles are an act of god. 2. Miracles are explained immediately. 3. Miracles happen for a purpose.

There are tons of stuff that are not explicable by science, and it's right in front of our faces. But they are not for science to explain. 1. Why is there matter. 2. Why exist stupid idiots in the world. 3. Why people believe that there is truth in incredibly badly written text written 2000 years ago featuring logically impossible concepts (among many other highly suspiciously improbable things.)
Hi, -1-, and thanks for your comments. I would appreciate your definition of "supernatural". I agree that "miracle" and "supernatural" have religious connotations in our culture. This is unfortunate, when you try to get people to change their notions of them. It's like trying to talk people into thinking of "God" as a metaphor for "Love", or "Goodness". Try that on a religious fanatic!

In the spirit of Socrates, who said the definition of terms is the beginning of wisdom, I tried to define "supernatural" and then see what that concept led to. If you have the time, read my thread, "Droll Implications of the Supernatural". It's non-committal about the existence or absence of the supernatural, and only looks at the consequences, first, of assuming it doesn't exist, and second, that it does. I didn't need any concept of religion or "God" in my reasoning. My definitions refer to human knowledge and science, and human capability to know and understand.

It's rather amusing that my reasoning shows that both believers in the supernatural (as I defined it) and the non-believers have to admit ignorance concerning any unexplained, amazing event. The pro-supernaturalists tend to say,"It's a miracle!", and the anti-supernaturalists tend to say, "Oh, a natural, scientific explanation exists and someday will be found.". Both sides have their own brand of faith, it looks to me.

In the meantime, neither side can be sure of its position, as long as no correct explanation in nature is available. The pro-supernaturalists can't prove humans will never be able to obtain such an explanation, and the anti-supernaturalists simply don't have one. Time to go out for drinks and share in the mystery of the amazing event.

I'm glad, however, that it turns out that, whether the supernatural exists or not, there is a lot of mystery in life, amazing phenomena such as "spooky action at a distance", and so scientists and other investigators have lots to do.

As for my views on scripture, read my post in the thread, "Frailty of Scripture", under Philosophy of Religion.

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Lacewing
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Re: The supernatural

Post by Lacewing » Thu Jul 05, 2018 11:00 pm

-1- wrote:
Thu Jul 05, 2018 8:15 pm
There are tons of stuff that are not explicable by science, and it's right in front of our faces. But they are not for science to explain. 1. Why is there matter. 2. Why exist stupid idiots in the world. 3. Why people believe that there is truth in incredibly badly written text written 2000 years ago featuring logically impossible concepts (among many other highly suspiciously improbable things.)
:lol: :lol: :lol:

#1 - I don't care.

#2 - Keeps me up at night.

#3 - Perplexing, but funny.

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Sir-Sister-of-Suck
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Re: The supernatural

Post by Sir-Sister-of-Suck » Fri Jul 06, 2018 12:30 am

Greta wrote:
Wed Jul 04, 2018 11:25 pm
I was a psychonaut too. Young people are curious and experiment. You either grow out of experimentation or you lead a short life replete with ever more risky experiments. Each is a valid way of living a life. I think of the "27 club" - all those pop musicians who died at age 27 - they packed more achievement and activity in their short lives than I and many others have managed in mover double that time. They are supernovas while many of us are more like red dwarfs
Hah, I'm still pretty young. But I'm just a very different person than I was when I was a teenager. It's hard to predict if an experience on a psychedelic or dissociative is going to be positive, but its very easy to know if your experience will be negative, because thinking that you're going to have a bad trip will be enough to do it.

I think a musician's death has a big impact on that perception, though. People tend to glorify someone more when they aren't alive.
I actually wouldn't recommend LSD to anyone based on my experiences; it taught me nothing. I consider weed to be infinitely better on all levels aside from lung health, although vaping can greatly reduce that load too. Also, towering works of the imagination are possible without psychedelics, such as Olaf Stapledon's sci-fi novel, Star Maker http://gutenberg.net.au/ebooks06/0601841.txt, written in 1937 and presumably before psychedelic drugs were well known but probably trippier than anything I've come across aside from Burroughs.
Marijuana is a fairly new tool to me, even though I first took tried it a long time ago. It was generally a pretty bad experience, although I didn't smoke/vape it at that time. Now that it's legalized in my state, something was compelling me to try it again. After experimenting with a few different strains and products, I find it pretty indispensable in my life.

There isn't a lot of insight in the trips themselves, but it's my perspective on the world around me that's changing. It's like long after the drug is out of my system, it's still having an effect on the way I think about things. Just much less cynicism, to put it in the most simple way.

I'll check out that novel sometime. Interesting.
Last edited by Sir-Sister-of-Suck on Fri Aug 31, 2018 1:10 am, edited 1 time in total.

Mike Strand
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Re: The supernatural

Post by Mike Strand » Fri Jul 06, 2018 5:07 pm

Lacewing wrote:
Thu Jul 05, 2018 6:48 pm
I think it's interesting how we initially ignore the larger implications when the revelations of science or the supernatural extend "reality" beyond our previous models. For example... an atom being in two places at once. Or the Hundredth Monkey Phenomenon -- whereby knowledge has been shown to transfer through members of a species separated by distance. Or perhaps we truly see or hear or feel something that doesn't fit with our normal reality. The larger implications of such things are fantastic!

We are so intent on fitting new information/experiences into our existing models -- separating or compartmentalizing as needed -- both on a personal level and as a species -- almost as if our very "existence" depends on it! Think of the implications of THAT! :lol:
Another example is "spooky action at a distance" -- two particles widely separated in space (our understanding of space) which seemingly move in sync. Is there a larger space with dimensions we humans can't experience?

Your comments here, once again, are appreciated!

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QuantumT
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Re: The supernatural

Post by QuantumT » Fri Jul 06, 2018 5:40 pm

Mike Strand wrote:
Fri Jul 06, 2018 5:07 pm
Another example is "spooky action at a distance" -- two particles widely separated in space (our understanding of space) which seemingly move in sync. Is there a larger space with dimensions we humans can't experience?

Your comments here, once again, are appreciated!
We call that phenomenon "non-locality".

I have an explanation/cause/theory for it. It's based on the interpretation of the collapse of the wave function, that says the collapse is caused by the observer. Not all researchers agree on that though, dispite its logic (A causes B).

In non-locality - which is not a natural phenomena IMO - the observation itself keeps the particles in a common position. As long as they are observed, they cannot break that common position. So when they get seperated and one of them has its position changed, the other one is forced to do the same, due to the observation.
In that theory, non-locality will not work if only one of the particles is observed after seperation.

The beauty of that theory is that the cause of the cotwf and non-locality is exactly the same.

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Re: The supernatural

Post by Mike Strand » Fri Jul 06, 2018 10:59 pm

QuantumT wrote:
Fri Jul 06, 2018 5:40 pm
Mike Strand wrote:
Fri Jul 06, 2018 5:07 pm
Another example is "spooky action at a distance" -- two particles widely separated in space (our understanding of space) which seemingly move in sync. Is there a larger space with dimensions we humans can't experience?

Your comments here, once again, are appreciated!
We call that phenomenon "non-locality".

I have an explanation/cause/theory for it. It's based on the interpretation of the collapse of the wave function, that says the collapse is caused by the observer. Not all researchers agree on that though, dispite its logic (A causes B).

In non-locality - which is not a natural phenomena IMO - the observation itself keeps the particles in a common position. As long as they are observed, they cannot break that common position. So when they get seperated and one of them has its position changed, the other one is forced to do the same, due to the observation.
In that theory, non-locality will not work if only one of the particles is observed after seperation.

The beauty of that theory is that the cause of the cotwf and non-locality is exactly the same.
Thanks for this, QuantumT!

To me the wave function is just the conceptual probability distribution of the possible states of a particle, which, if observed, will be caught in one state -- like when you observe a throw of a die after it has been rattling around in the shaker. These probability distributions can be drawn on a blackboard. Two dice, each with its own shaker and thrown down at the same time, don't have to turn up with the same number of spots, which may be where my analogy here fails to explain the non-locality theory. Somehow the dice would have to be tied together in a complicated way, it seems to me.

In your explanation, why do the two particles have to be in the same state when they are observed? Still a mystery, I think. The non-locality explanation begs questions about what other factors may be at work.

Your opinion is appreciated, then, that non-locality is not a natural phenomenon. It may fit my definition of the supernatural: A phenom. that can't be understood by human beings.
Last edited by Mike Strand on Fri Jul 06, 2018 11:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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attofishpi
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Re: The supernatural

Post by attofishpi » Fri Jul 06, 2018 11:03 pm

The problem with this thread is parallel:
1. People want to impel their drug experiences which has nothing to do with the title.
2. People think that if you experience something that is not natural to beings standard form of existence, then it should be rendered 'supernatural'

The entire thread should be left to the superficial if you are truly searching for 'supernatural'.

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Sir-Sister-of-Suck
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Re: The supernatural

Post by Sir-Sister-of-Suck » Fri Jul 06, 2018 11:14 pm

attofishpi wrote:
Fri Jul 06, 2018 11:03 pm
The problem with this thread is parallel:
1. People want to impel their drug experiences which has nothing to do with the title.
2. People think that if you experience something that is not natural to beings standard form of existence, then it should be rendered 'supernatural'

The entire thread should be left to the superficial if you are truly searching for 'supernatural'.
Well, some people would describe their drug experiences as supernatural-like, which is the best some of us can muster because I'd imagine the lot of us are material atheists.

The experience mentioned in my post did not occur while I was on a drug, though.

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